10 December 2011
They lowered their paralytic friend from the Roof, and Jesus healed him
– Extracted from Luke, Chapter 5:
17 Now it happened that Jesus was teaching one day, and Pharisees and teachers of the Law, who had come from every village in Galilee, from Judaea and from Jerusalem, were sitting there. And the Power of the Lord was behind His work of healing.
18 And now some men appeared, bringing on a bed a paralyzed man whom they were trying to bring in and lay down in front of him.
19 But as they could find no way of getting the man through the crowd, they went up onto the top of the house and lowered him and his stretcher down through the tiles into the middle of the gathering, in front of Jesus.
20 Seeing their faith he said, 'My friend, your sins are forgiven you.'
21 The scribes and the Pharisees began to think this over. 'Who is this man, talking blasphemy? Who but God alone can forgive sins?'
22 But Jesus, aware of their thoughts, made them this reply, 'What are these thoughts you have in your hearts?
23 Which of these is easier: to say, "Your sins are forgiven you," or to say, "Get up and walk"?
24 But to prove to you that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins,' - he said to the paralyzed man-'I order you: get up, and pick up your stretcher and go home.'
25 And immediately before their very eyes he got up, picked up what he had been lying on and went home praising God.
26 They were all astounded and praised God and were filled with awe, saying, 'We have seen strange things today.' 8-)
(Our Reflections: Don’t you think that the friends of this paralyzed man were innovative, they used the good brains given by God to find ways to solve a “non-standard & difficult” problem- to have their paralyzed friend reach Jesus (as the crowds were obstructing them), so that Jesus could perform this wonderful miracle for their friend.
If you are an engineer like me, you would know that this lowering operation was never an easy one; they would first need to make a big opening in the flat roof (bigger than the size of the stretcher). They had to take all precautions to remove the roof tiles and rafters/beams and at the same time ensure that the roof would not collapse (this required good engineering judgements) & no debris would fall on the people in the room where Jesus was. They then had to coordinate the lowering operation, to ensure that their paralyzed friend was always in a horizontal & stable position; thus they were to hold the supporting robes and had them lowered in a gentle & yet firm manner, and in well coordinated stages, so that their paralyzed friend would not just over-turned and fall off from the stretcher…making matters worse… crushing onto the crowd… and creating a chaotic situation. 8-(
I think this is a beautiful example for all of us; when we have a “difficult or near impossible” task in front of us, we do not just consider areas within our expertise, but would always look at the “Overall Perspective”, have the humility to discuss and coordinate with others in the team or to seek help, so that our endeavours, with the help of God would become a success…I firmly believe that this is the will of God for us… because our God is a God of Goodness & not a god of chaos.) 8-)
Do you want to ensure that your house, all the fruits of your hard work remain forever? Here’s the way. 8-)
- Extracted from Matthew, Chapter 7:
21 'It is not anyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord," who will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but the person who does the will of my Father in heaven.
22 When the day comes many will say to me, "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, drive out demons in your name, work many miracles in your name?"
23 Then I shall tell them to their faces: I have never known you; away from me, all evil doers!
24 'Therefore, everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on rock.
25 Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and hurled themselves against that house, and it did not fall: it was founded on rock.
26 But everyone who listens to these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a stupid man who built his house on sand.
27 Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and struck that house, and it fell; and what a fall it had!'
28 Jesus had now finished what he wanted to say, and his teaching made a deep impression on the people
29 because he taught them with authority, unlike their own scribes.
If we build our lives on Jesus Christ the Eternal Rock, we would be doing fine. As He would be our Powerful Protector and Savior to deliver us out of possible harmful situations and ensure our well-being, He would lead us on the path of joy and happiness, but the choice is ours; whether we allow Him to do so.
Jesus had in many occasions, used construction related parables and the aforesaid is just one of them. His principles still hold true for us civil and structural engineers now. Don’t we always design piled foundation for structures, with pile toes embedded & rested on hard rock stratum, to ensure the designed bearing capacity could be achieved; with probably few exceptions using friction piles concept?
From these, it is logical to deduce that Jesus is not only a Divine Doctor, but also a very Fine Civil & Structural Engineer. Obviously, he learned these Engineering Concepts from His Foster Father Saint Joseph, who was also a very Fine Engineer, Constructer and Carpenter.
When Jesus saw the crowds, He felt sorry for them - Extracted from Matthew 9:35 - 10:1, 6-8
Jesus made a tour through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Good News of the Kingdom and curing all kinds of diseases and sickness.
And when He saw the crowds He felt sorry for them because they were harassed and dejected, like sheep without a shepherd.
Then He said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest.’
He summoned His twelve (12) disciples, and gave them authority over unclean spirits with power to cast them out and to cure all kinds of diseases and sickness.
These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them as follows: ‘Go rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
And as you go, proclaim that the kingdom of heaven is close at hand.
Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out devils.
You received without charge, give without charge.’
(Our Reflections: Let’s help Jesus in His work and be good shepherds to those that God has entrusted to our care. Let’s not be like some irresponsible men who are faithless to their calling, creating “chaotic situations” and running away, causing Jesus headache and leaving Him to resolve the mess...)
Here’s the route to Happiness 8-) - Extracted from Isaiah 48:17-19
Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
I, the Lord, your God, teach you what is good for you, I lead you in the way that you must go.
If only you had been alert to My commandments your happiness would have been like a river your integrity like the waves of the sea.
Your children would have been numbered like the sand, your descendants as many as the its grains.
Never would your name have been cut off or blotted out before Me.
10 December 2011